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Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Celebration AleSierra Nevada Celebration Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

3,291 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 3,291
Hads: 9,408
Avg: 4.15
pDev: 19.76%
Wants: 328
Gots: 1,329 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-02-2001

Fresh Hop Ale; no spices.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 3,291 | Hads: 9,408
Photo of VashonGuy
3.71/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance is gorgeous ... beautiful amber red color, big head, nice lacing.

Otherwise, this beer doesn't appeal to me so much. It's not that I don't like IPAs ... I've rated over a dozen IPAs or DIPAs at 4 or above. But this IPA just seems mostly bitter and not interesting enough to my palate. I think I like fruity and floral IPAs, which this is not.

I'm generally a big fan of Sierra Nevada, too. So I'm a little perplexed by how much I differ from the crowd on this beer.

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Photo of maedhros09
4.98/5  rDev +20%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Deep amber color with full fluffy head, cloudy with yeast. Rich cascade hops aroma, deep grapefruit hops flavor with balancing maltiness about 2/3 of the way.

This was the beer that hooked me on IPAs. There may be some emotional bias, but I still think it may be my favorite IPA. I can't wait to pick up a six pack of these every winter.

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Photo of ajm5108
3.65/5  rDev -12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Mostly citrus hops, but not stinging in its bitterness or hop profile...not particularly interesting or unique but fairly well balanced and medium bodied enough to be a good ipa option in the winter

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Photo of MaddenDalyBrokaw
4.22/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A lovely, deep amber. Aroma is mild, of hops: citrus and pine. Tastes and feels great, with upfront hops ending on a real piquant note. A little maltiness backing it all up. Quickly warming with high alcohol. Would make a great beer to have around for day-to-day consumption during these winter months.

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Photo of SlamKing
4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2014 Edition:

It's a good beer no doubt, but I was a little disappointed by the lack of hoppy flavor. There isn't a whole lot of what I would expect from an IPA. Tastes maltier, which I would expect from a winter beer, but not enough pine to balance it out. Could use a little more carbonation. Good stuff overall. I would drink it again.

Gave it a 4, maybe I'll change my mind next season.

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Photo of UPMD_Bill
4.05/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm not a big IPA fan but I found a lot to like about this. There was a ton of aroma and flavor from the hops, not just bitter. Some christmas tree-like pine notes made this a great holiday selection.

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Photo of GFM
3.88/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Inviting clear amber color; healthy head (a bit more than I would have expected); lacing present; I smelled more toasted grain than hops but overall lacked any prominent aromatics; balanced, but I found the hops to yield too much to an earthy maltiness. Overall: good but not great and nothing that made the flavor stand out to me. I recalled enjoying it more in years past. I will revisit next season. (8.5)

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Photo of MtnSoup
3.18/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Was a bit underwhelmed by this beer - I remember liking the 2013 and 2012 versions more, which is strange as I've seen the opposite from many reviewers of the 2014 version (which I what convinced me to buy it again). Balanced, but I was hoping for slightly more hop.

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Photo of snilsen13
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This is SN's best seasonal IMO. I look forward to it and buy a box every season, sometimes it hits the spot so perfectly I buy more, other times I don't. It floats from being superb to being very good. You never lose.

I think 2012 and 2013 were better than 2014, just based on how much I bought. That's not saying it isn't quite good, just that opinions vary.

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Photo of ZebraCakez
3.67/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a nice copper color with active two finger head.

S: The aroma is of strong hops with a mild pine note.

T: The hops are present, along with a nice malt backbone. It's citrus and pine notes are strong on the finish.

F: It's a very active beer, mouthfeel is light and well carbonated.

O: A very enjoyable brew, another great IPA from Sierra Nevada and well worth a try.

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Photo of Barnoloid
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a sixer as I felt this was a popular seasonal that I had yet to enjoy. Bottle pours a deep copper with good carbonation and a deep white head. The lacing here is fantastic. Clings satisfyingly to the glass. A really well balanced fresh hop IPA. The amount of balance between the hops and caramel malts along with a bitter back end is remarkable. Lots to celebrate here.

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Photo of bbqwalt
4.38/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Sorry I only found it one time. Loved it out of the bottle but had one disappointment on tap. Nice IPA for the holidays. Sierra is a beer snob bargain at Costco in Northern CA. My brother in law labeled me a beer snob.

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Photo of BWED
4.07/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

12 oz. bottle poured into a Spiegelau IPA glass.

A- Copper/amber. Head is light tan, thick (two finger) and dense/lumpy. Great retention and lacing. Really beautiful.

S- Fresh pine, very slight citrus. Sweet bready malt character. A little brown sugar.

T- Malt is a little more toasty and grainy. Citrus comes through slightly more, but the pine is overwhelmingly the main hop character.

M- Body is medium light. Dry biter finish.

O- More bitter than I like, and I think I'd still like to drink this one in warmer weather, but nevertheless, a really great beer. Looks great and the hop aroma is fantastic.

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Photo of JohnnyI
4.46/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What better way to ring in the New Year than with a 2014 Celebration Ale? Cheers! Oops... In my zeal to enjoy this one, perhaps I got a little carried away. My aggressive pour created a towering 4-finger head that overwhelmed my IPA glass and cascaded down to the countertop. Sweet precious ale, what have I done?! After squeezing the last ounce in the glass, I was left with an ice cream float-like head. Ample lacing crowned the deep, hazy, nectar colored liquid. I took a few moments to admire the robust and beautiful garnet-amber hue before diving in to the nose. It didn't take long for the potent scents to waft upward. Spruce pine and juniper mingled with a sweet grapefruit citrus and hints of pineapple. Reminiscent of the fresh bed of pine straw that falls in my yard each Autumn, with a zesty citrus flare. There's an underlying bread crust in the nose that struggles to compete with the floral and perfume-like hops. The flavor was a vibrant hop explosion. Earthy, herbal and fresh. Ruby red grapefruit. The caramel malt backbone also stands tall but struggles to support the alpha acids. To call this balanced would be a lie, but the malts are noteworthy and serve to further illustrate how incredible the star of the show really is. All of this is delivered with a rich, chewy mouthfeel and creamy carbonation. I've run out of adjectives. It's simply delicious and represents the high-water mark for American IPA's. Sierra Nevada continues to impress with their admirable ales and the West Coast sure shows us how it's done. Happy New Year Beer Advocates. Welcome to 2015!!!

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Photo of jakethal
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Got a growler and have to say this is pretty good stuff. Very tasty and not overly hoppy. First time I've tried it and I will certainly be getting some more soon.

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Photo of Krobinette
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice pour, color, and head retention...tastes good, hoppy but not overly so. Slight aftertaste, not unpleasant but noticeable. Would like go try it on draught but doubt if it is offered that way since it is a seasonal. Will buy again...

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Photo of EvoRich
4.37/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look: Pours with a nice head with a deep copper color. Hazy in appearance.

Smell: Bitter hops, yet mildly sweet aromas.

Taste: Hoppy, with some yeast with sweet flavors. Mildly bitter.

Feel: Nice creamy feel

Overall: I'm not a big IPA guy, but I still like them. Didn't expect what I got with this one. Very good!

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Photo of KATCanada
3.4/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12/29/2014 with 2-14 vintage. Getting a little long in the tooth it seems. Dark golden coloe with good off white foam. At fridge temp not a lot of nose. Nice mouth feel, good carbonation. Strong bitterness on finish. Malts come through through and sort of a grapefruit pith taste. It's a'right, wish I'd had it fresher. Unlike some others I'd prefer the Pale ale.

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Photo of Riggsby
4.36/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Been drinking this one since mid 1990's. Tasted quite a bit of change with the scale up and hop crisis/competition. Much grassier these days ("fresh hops") as are more and more ales these days. 2014 better than 2013 and so on back to 2010, the worst year by far. "Economies of scale" evidenced in the brewery that weaned me from Sam Adams when i lived in SoCal. Still a "GoTo" (pun intended) ale this time of year- optimally on tap.

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Photo of Bone53
4.16/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance (4.75): A rich amber color topped with two fingers of egg shell colored head, which makes for a beautiful looking beer.

Smell (4.25): Tropical and citrus fruits and pine needles with a bready malt undertone

Taste (4): Piney, citrtusy, and malty. I get some alcohol and slight astringent

Mouthfeel (4): Medium body; Goes down good then the alcohol hits you and maybe a bit too bitter, and i like bitter

Overall: I personally remember this being better last year. It seemed to have more malt balancing out the bitterness. I got an astringent character that i havent noticed in the past. Maybe my tastebuds are off, or perhaps my palate is more mature. Its still a solid winter offering with the pine and alcohol presence. Will revisit next year

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Photo of mick303
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

From the 2014 bottle. Colour is a caramel golden, ruby tints. A great amount of curtain lacing and retention.

S- grapefruit citrus, orange, pine needles, caramel malt with robust bready notes, a nice sprucy herbal hop aroma with some nice citrus sharp hints. Nice warming spice.

T- a robust start, malty bready notes, pine herbalness and a orange peel with some caramel added. Rich fruity character, cherry and red fruits, blood orange, citrus, mixed with a really nice earthy pine character. It melds really nicely and the hops certainly add a great flavour and depth.

M- moderate body, some malty sweetness and also a solid hop oily bitterness, moderate carbonation and very drinkable thanks to the great balance.

I would probably prefer this to the pale ale. A really delicious ale with nice piney and citrus hop notes, with some solid earthiness and robust caramel malt. Delicious with a subtle sweetness that shows some nice hop flavour development. Lovely beer with a great complexity and also great drinkability.

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Photo of tkelley
4.06/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a SAPP glass.two month old bottle.

A - clear, Amber body with puffy off white head. Good retention and lacing.

N - mostly malts actually. Kind of surprising. Citrusy hop presence.

T - much hoppier than the nose. Tasty orange and grapefruit with a heavy resiny/piney effect.

M - very drinkable. Nicely carbonated.

O - delicious.a must have every year. Cheers!

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Photo of MadDog
3.55/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I've enjoyed and always looked forward to the Celebration offering come Winter. But for some reason, I'm finding the 2014 batch to be less appealing than I remember. Very hoppy without as much balancing malt as years past. Is it just me or are others picking up on this?

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Photo of JimmyAloysius
4.36/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Love this beer each and every year. Perfect balance of hops and malt and should be considered a household favorite of beer drinkers throughout the holiday season.

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Photo of almostjay
3.92/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Decent beer. Not quite worthy of the reverence it receives, in my opinion. Nice and hoppy but has a bit of a metallic flavor that I find in most SN beers. It's good, but nothing special.

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Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 3,291 ratings.